Percussion Drummers

filipe

New Member
Messages
10
I started by playing the drums and now I'm also addicted to sax (I'm dedicating around 80% to sax and 20% to drums on my music schedule).
So I wanted to see how many drummers that play sax are there and what do you apply from drumming onto sax and vice-versa.

For example: I started on drums, so I studied a lot of rhythm exercises, like rhythmic solfeggio, groove patterns, drum rudiments (playing around the duality of the left and right hands and/or feet), etc.

When I pick up the sax to do some practicing, I sometimes take phrases of the rhythmic solfeggio and improvise on a scale, using those rhythmic patterns. Or use a drum rudiment, like the "Paradiddle" (RLRR LRLL, R=right hand, L=left hand) and apply the right-left duality on the sax as different notes (for example, CGCC GCGG).

Overall, the drum training I have, tends to come in my mind, which gives me a different a different approach when playing sax, particularly in free improvising.
 

Mikec

Member
Messages
201
Location
Buckinghamshire, UK
I've always used a set of bongos to define and play around with rhythms, which I find very useful, but I have no training. I recently bought a cajon which is that packing-case shaped instrument you sit on and play, much used in flamenco. It has a large range of timbres and is less technically demanding than other percussion instruments (that's not to say that the cajon masters are not true masters, of course. The top players are as skilled as any others.).


www.cajondg.com
 

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
Hi Filipe,

So you are a drummer, that's handy to know...

...I just happen to have a pair of bongos and was wondering if you could give me any advice on tuning them? I know the skins should be tensioned evenly by tightening across the diagonal but how tight should they be? What sort of tone difference should I hear between the small and large heads? Sorry for all the questions but I fear I will break the heads if I over tighten them.

I struggle a bit with rhythm hence the bongos, I think it might have even been Mikec who suggested them to me and I'm easily lead :w00t:

All the best,

Chris
 
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filipe

New Member
Messages
10
Mikec: yes having an instrument or another of percussion is good to practice some some rhythm patterns, but never forget the piano, it's also percussive so you can just use 2 notes for left and right hands/fingers to emulate a pair of bongos or a cajon.
I actually have bongos and cajon and... a series of other percussive (and non-percussive) instruments like an Udu drum, a berimbau, etc.

Chris98: Hi, well about tuning the bongos, I've had mine for a couple of years now and never had to tune them, but the general rule I use is what sounds good, is good. And that applies to the tone difference. It'll be hard to break the skin by overtightening, I think you'd break the lugs (where you tune it) first.
 

Chris98

Senior Member
Messages
1,076
Chris98: Hi, well about tuning the bongos, I've had mine for a couple of years now and never had to tune them, but the general rule I use is what sounds good, is good. And that applies to the tone difference. It'll be hard to break the skin by overtightening, I think you'd break the lugs (where you tune it) first.
Hi Filipe,

That's good to know, thanks for your help. I can imagine the racket I'm going to make in the days to come as I work out how to play them :w00t:

All the best,

Chris
 

visionari1

Senior Member
Messages
1,606
Location
Out in the Countryside of Nelson NZ
Good post this...I think drumming is great practise for sax players...I haven't done any yet myself, but think the proper exposure to rhythm is where all the good stuff must be for improvisation. I know Joe Lovano, Mike Brecker and Jerry Bergonzi are all hot drummers. The sound of the drums are IMHO also connected to energy, and seem to involve the whole body (hands and feet), which surely must get your internal energies fair humming!

Cheers & Ciao
Jimu:mrcool
 

Mikec

Member
Messages
201
Location
Buckinghamshire, UK
Good post this...I think drumming is great practise for sax players...I haven't done any yet myself, but think the proper exposure to rhythm is where all the good stuff must be for improvisation. I know Joe Lovano, Mike Brecker and Jerry Bergonzi are all hot drummers. The sound of the drums are IMHO also connected to energy, and seem to involve the whole body (hands and feet), which surely must get your internal energies fair humming!

Cheers & Ciao
Jimu:mrcool
Yes!

It had never occurred to me that bongos needed tuning as such. They came with a little spanner, and occasionally I tighten the skins so that they "ring" rather than have a flat sound, but that's it.

I have a keyboard, filipe, and I used to (and still do, sometimes) play out rhythms on it as you suggested, but I find that process a little lifeless; belting a rhythm out on a cajon or bongoes brings it to life much more so you can really get the "feel" as visionari suggests.
 

Pete C

Member
Messages
346
Location
Exeter
another budding drummer

I took up congas a few years ago and take them on some of my gigs - usually trio gigs where they add a nice groove to latin tunes - hell of a problem getting back on the sax smoothly at the end of the piano solo mind.

Then a year or so ago I bought a jazz drum kit on ebay, mainly to work on my time away from the sax, but just fell in love with the whole thing and now aim to practice for 30 to 60 minutes every day. Also have a rehearsal band where I play drums with one of my pupils on sax and will be playing the drums at some of my upcoming workshops.

The work I have been doing on drum rudiments, grooves, independence, fours etc is all coming through in the sax playing and can recommend it to anyone - it's also great fun.

Pete
 
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